In addition to this morning's Missoulian report about Melodee Hanes' role in Max Baucus' divorce proceedings, Politico.com is reporting that Baucus gave Hanes a $14,000 raise while they were dating. He also took her on a
romantic vacation taxpayer-funded trip to Southeast Asia and the Middle East, though foreign policy was not her specialty.
More from Politico:
Around the time when her relationship with Baucus reportedly “intensified” in the summer of 2008, Hanes’s salary jumped $13,687, according to public documents covering the April 1-Sept. 30, 2008, period, to among the highest on the senator’s payroll.
In a statement to POLITICO, Baucus’s office argued that “virtually our entire staff” saw their salaries rise during the period, saying the raise was on a par with the legislative director’s and less than the chief of staff’s.
“In fact, during that period, Ms. Hanes’s salary increased by the exact same amount as our legislative director and less than our chief of staff,” said a statement from a Baucus spokesman.